The Agricultural Census (RA) will take place in 2019.
The statistical operations regarding the agricultural censuses, conducted every ten years, provide the country with a comprehensive framework of information on the sector, which is essential for decision-making in agricultural, rural development, regional and territorial policies.
The RA 2019 has a strategic dimension at national level, as it allows a statistical reading of the previously assumed objective of boosting the Portuguese agricultural sector; this sector has captured the growing interest of young entrepreneurs, through support for the establishment of the activity, the increasingly frequent use of new technologies, and the enhancement of agriculture and its growing importance in national exports. At European level, the results will contribute to the analysis of the performance of the CAP 2014-2020 and to draw lessons for the post-2020 framework.
Statistics Portugal is the responsible entity for the implementation of the RA 2019. To this end, it is supported by a Monitoring Committee, whose coordination it ensures together with the Office of Planning, Policy and General Administration of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Development. Statistics Azores (SREA) and the Regional Directorate of Statistics of Madeira (DREM) also participate in the implementation of the RA 2019 in the Autonomous Regions.
Our commitment is that the RA 2019 will provide accurate and quality information that meets the needs of the agricultural sector and users in general. For the success of this operation, Statistics Portugal relies on the active and committed participation of farmers, which is essential to ensure the accuracy and quality of the data collected.
The data regarding the RA 2019 will be collected in person by interviewers from all agricultural holdings located in the national territory.
The field operation will take place between October 2019 and May 2020; the dissemination of the results will take place at the end of 2020.
The response to the census is mandatory and confidential (Law 22/2008, of 13 May). The individual information provided by farmers is intended, under the terms of the Law, exclusively for statistical purposes and may not be disclosed or used for any other purpose.
The recruitment of interviewers and the hiring of senior technicians with analysis and information management functions shall be the sole responsibility of Statistics Portugal.
Interviewers will use their own computer equipment and communications (bring your own device solution, a growing trend at international level), which simplifies the working process and the collection of the geographical coordinates of farms.
The size of the operation requires a large data collection chain. The field structure is divided into 42 units distributed throughout the country. Nearly 1,600 people will be involved, of which 1,300 will be interviewers, in addition to Statistics Portugal technicians.
Statistics Portugal acknowledges and thanks the collaboration of all the Farmers in the response to the RA 2019!
The European legislative acts governing the RA 2019 are new and are part of the strategy for agricultural statistics 2020 and beyond. This strategy includes two basic regulations, the first of which, "Integrated statistics on agricultural holdings", frames the RA 2019 in legal terms, based on a modular approach, in which central variables ("core"), thematic modules and Ad-hoc modules, collected at farm level and with transmission of micro-data to the European Commission, cross each other.
REGULATION (EU) 2018/1091 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 18 July 2018 on integrated farm statistics and repealing Regulations (EC) No 1166/2008 and (EU) No 1337/2011.
COMMISSION IMPLEMENTING REGULATION (EU) 2018/1874 of 29 November 2018 on the data to be provided for 2020 under Regulation (EU) 2018/1091 of the European Parliament and of the Council on integrated farm statistics and repealing Regulations (EC) No 1166/2008 and (EU) No 1337/2011, as regards the list of variables and their description.
In accordance with Council of Ministers Resolution no. 40/2018, a Monitoring Committee was set up to monitor the preparation and implementation of the RA 2019. The committee is coordinated by Statistics Portugal, in conjunction with the Office of Planning, Policy and General Administration of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Development, and is made up of the relevant representative services, entities and structures in this field.
The benefits resulting from the coordination of the RA 2019 Monitoring Committee, in the organisational model of this operation, are directly related to the use of synergies and the sharing of experiences and local knowledge.
As part of the committee's duties, which will monitor the development, preparation and implementation of this census operation, regular meetings and allocation of tasks are planned.
The close collaboration of the sector entities, in particular those that make up the Monitoring Committee, will be decisive for the successful completion of the RA 2019, namely in promoting recruitment and selection, analysis and technical contributions to the questionnaire and field material, and in raising farmers' awareness of the response.
Point 6 of MRC n.º 40/2018 (which sets up the Census Monitoring Committee) provides for the power to "Collaborate in the definition of the Plan of the Operation upon a proposal from Statistics Portugal", among other duties.
The Planning, approved in October 2018, takes into account the various dimensions of the statistical operation, in particular aspects related to the organisation, establishing the organisational model and the flowchart of the field work.
The organizational model adopted for the pursuit of the work to be carried out by the 'Data Collection Chain' is a determining factor for the quality of the results of the RA 2019.
The size of the statistical operation requires decentralised management, based on the Data Collection Chain, whose structure is designed in such a way as to enhance the optimisation/efficiency of the teams and allocated resources.
The work is based on data collection procedures, which aim to organise, manage, monitor and control the data collection, in order to ensure the quality of the output data.
Data analysis is supported by a dedicated software application, with functionalities developed specifically for this purpose.
The Metadata System integrates and provides concepts, classifications, variables, data collection instruments and methodological documentation concerning the official statistical operations and their results.
RA 2019 data collection is carried out in person by an interviewer at all agricultural holdings in the country. The documents pertaining of the field work are available here.
A good promotion campaign of the RA 2019 is essential to ensure that all those involved, namely agricultural producers, information users, and the general public, are receptive and cooperative.